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The Art of Writing Strongly Worded Emails

Have you ever worked with someone and wanted to express your feelings towards them in an unfriendly manner? If not, you are lying to yourself.

Indifferences at work are not just common but rather inevitable and if you’re very unlucky, insufferable. The more involved you are, the more opportunities there are to discover that everyone might not be on the same page as you. Thankfully, Zoom enables us to keep one from indulging in indecent or violent behaviour as otherwise you might have a case of sore punches, broken fingers, and an expired career. It’s common knowledge that when such indiscrepancies occur, they stem from either lack of appropriate framing, grave miscommunication, or a pure disregard of one’s time and effort. Therefore, it is important to explore the art of writing strongly-worded emails because after all, communication is key.

Reaction – Response

When you are engulfed with anger, your body releases stress hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol. While experiencing this phenomenon, one is likely to act out of impulse or feel extreme emotions. Neither of which is suitable for a professional email. A few mistakes that are likely to incur are to say something you do not intend, communicate incomplete information, focus on the less important points, take it personally, and display improper mannerisms. Thus, converting your initial “reaction” to a “response” is the first order of business. “What do I want out of this interaction?”, “Is this necessary?”, and “Is it congruent with our company guidelines?” are some questions you can ask yourself that help you formulate the intention behind your response.

Manners

Manners are a good way to standardize everything besides the point of the message. It makes one seem more humane and respectful of what they do not know about others. Although you’re delivering a harsh message, you might as well try not to come off as uncouth and ignorant of basic decency. It is not necessary to be friendly but harsh messages are far more likely to be well-received when you’re courteous and imply that you care about the receiver.

Ground Zero

When you decide to write a strongly worded email you must be prepared to be patient and go over how the issue started, how it continued, and list out everything that has led to this point. It provides an overview to the recipient that your email was not out of nowhere. Information can be misinterpreted and the stakes are even higher when you have something critical to communicate. Therefore, provide a basis for why they are receiving this email.

A prime but silent confounder in the relationship between authority and credibility is honesty.

Honesty

A prime but silent confounder in the relationship between authority and credibility is honesty. If you know you got carried away in the whole saga of the issue or slipped up yourself, then you must acknowledge it in this email. If your authority permits you to slip up, you can choose whether you want to make this fact clear to the receiver or simply rub it in their face. However, displaying transparency on your part as the sender not only makes you humble but also demonstrates that mistakes are a part of life and you certainly make them too. And it’s just unfortunate that some mistakes have larger consequences.

Structure

Now that we know of various important points to keep in mind when writing, here is a sample structure of a strongly worded email.

Dear Henry,

Hope this email finds you and your family safe, sound, and healthy. This email is regarding your irresponsibility and slacking as project manager as well as lack of consideration for your fellow team members.

As discussed in the meeting on 29th April, the report of the consolidated annual finances were to be presented to the executive board. Your response for the same was that you will prepare after you receive the numbers from the front desk. Secondly, you were expected to be present in the team meeting as you confirmed the same the following day. However, the meeting with the executive board is tomorrow and I still haven’t heard from you. Nor did you show up to the meeting you were supposed to co-present at.

Your inability to respond to many attempts of reaching out to you has been extremely unprofessional and rather disappointing after the amount of reflection done during your feedback hour. Furthermore, your disregard for the annual financial report for the second time is shameful. It was also noticed that you reached out to colleagues considering social engagements but did not think to revert back to any of the vain attempts of reaching out to you.

We will await your presence in the executive board meeting tomorrow along with the report and will expect you to take responsibility for your actions. The team has been working sincerely towards the company, if you are having doubts regarding your previously enthusiastic motivation then I would request you to communicate the same as soon as possible.

Please correct me if I have misrepresented the above-mentioned information and reach out to us to avoid any serious implications.

Looking forward to your response.

Kind regards,

Jessica Hansen

Senior Executive, Goldilocks Enterprise

By Aakansha Gupta, first published on https://www.mediummagazine.nl/ December 12, 2020